Southwest (AZ NM OK TX)

"Texas Weakens Chemical Exposure Guidelines, Opens Door for Polluters"

"AUSTIN — In 2007, Texas regulators quietly relaxed the state’s long-term air pollution guideline for benzene, one of the world’s most toxic and thoroughly studied chemicals. The number they came up with, still in effect, was 40 percent weaker, or less health-protective, than the old one."

12/19/2014

Texas Oil & Gas Regulators Say They Tried to Enforce Rules, Lost Jobs

"During their careers as oil and gas inspectors for the Texas Railroad Commission, Fred Wright and Morris Kocurek earned merit raises, promotions and praise from their supervisors. ... But they may have done their jobs too well for the industry’s taste—and for their own agency’s."

12/11/2014

"Accident at DuPont Puts Plant in Spotlight"

"DuPont Co. ’s chemical plant in La Porte, Texas, for many years has gained a strong reputation among industrial-safety experts for migrating to safer chemicals. ... So when a gas leak at the plant earlier this month caused four employees—two of them brothers—to be fatally overcome by an industrial chemical called methyl mercaptan, some in the chemical safety world were taken aback."

11/24/2014

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